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5 quick and healthy weeknight dinners

By Hilary Meyer, May 11, 2009 - 4:36am

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5 quick and healthy weeknight dinners

After a long day of work, it’s easy to let healthy eating slide. I would much prefer to go out to dinner than come home and start worrying about what to make for dinner. But I’ve found a secret to making quick, easy and healthy weeknight meals: I plan ahead. On Sunday, I make a list of meals for the week, I shop for them all at once, and post my menu on the fridge to stay on track. It’s a lot harder to justify a restaurant meal when all my ingredients for a healthy, home-cooked dinner that can be done quickly are right in front of me.

Here is what’s on the menu this week:

Monday: Steak & Potato Kebabs with Creamy Cilantro Sauce—Steak kebabs get a Southwestern spin with poblano peppers and a creamy sauce spiked with cilantro, chile powder, cumin and vinegar. The potatoes are partially cooked in the microwave before putting them on the grill so they’re done at the same time as faster-cooking steak, peppers and onions. Serve with: Green salad and Spanish rice.

Tuesday: Huevos Rancheros Verdes—Huevos rancheros or “ranch eggs” is a classic Mexican dish that is great for a quick dinner. Traditionally, it’s made with a red tomato-based sauce. Here we use tart and tangy green salsa instead. Serve with: Brown rice and slices of avocado.

Wednesday: Grilled Salmon & Zucchini with Red Pepper Sauce—Jazz up simply grilled salmon and summer vegetables with a zesty sauce based on the classic Spanish romesco. Made with roasted red peppers, tomatoes and almonds, this sauce is a great match for any seafood, poultry or vegetables. Using smoked paprika brings out the flavors from the grill. Serve with: Grilled baguette.

Thursday: Arugula & Prosciutto Pizza—Sautéed onions, prosciutto and fontina cheese flavor this white pizza. Topping the hot-out-of-the-oven pizza with fresh greens and diced tomatoes gives it a delicious, summery twist. We use store-bought pizza dough to keep it quick. Serve with: Crunchy vegetables and your favorite dip.

Friday: Oven-Fried Fish & Chips—Fish and chips are traditionally sold wrapped in paper to soak up all the grease—not a good sign. To cut the calories in half and reduce the fat, we coat the delicate fish in a crispy cornflake crust and then bake it along with sliced potatoes. Serve with: Coleslaw and malt vinegar or lemon wedges.

What do you like to cook on a busy weeknight? Tell us what you think below.

TAGS: Hilary Meyer, Food Blog, Dinner, Quick meals

Hilary Meyer
EatingWell Associate Food Editor Hilary Meyer spends much of her time in the EatingWell Test Kitchen, testing and developing healthy recipes. She is a graduate of New England Culinary Institute.

Hilary asks: What do you like to cook on a busy weeknight?

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